I was recently reminiscing with my boyfriend about my graduate school application process. I, of course, only retained the positive aspects (shocking!). I remembered all the great people I met and how when I visited Penn it felt like the perfect fit. Blah blah blah…
John (boyfriend) retained more of the ugly side of the process. He asked me if I remembered the crazy forum that I frequented: The Grad Cafe. After learning about it from a friend (who shall remain nameless), I checked out this website early in my application process and couldn’t unsee what I had seen.
Essentially, The Grad Cafe is a website dedicated to tracking and providing advice surrounding the graduate school application process. I truly believe the website was created with the intention of helping people navigate applications for PhD and Masters programs. However, for me, this website was a black hole of worry.
The Grad Cafe has discussion forums and a “Results Search” area. You can input the schools you applied to and the specific program to see if other students who applied to the program received acceptance letters, invites to interview weekends, rejections, etc. You can even peruse earlier years to get a sense of timing. Students often post notes about the letters or phone calls they receive and speculate as to the timing of acceptance letters. Everything is anonymous.
Crazy Megan, who was very eager to hear back from grad schools, checked this often. However, after torturing myself for several months, I would like to tell you: this is not helpful, do not do it to yourself. Instead, prepare your applications to the best of your ability, submit them on time, and then enjoy your life until you hear from programs. Follow the advice of our columnist Grad Gal Sal.
But – if you need a good laugh -- some of the stuff people post on there is hilarious and thought I would share some funny recent posts from The Grad Cafe, where potential grad students torture other potential grad students with tales of success and failure:
2. Rejection. Whatever!
3. They all quit.
4. Just like the old psychic woman said…
5. So sad
6. Cold morning rejection
7. A voice of reason
8. Bearer of bad news
9. Investing in sunscreen is so overrated
10. So much confidence